University of Otago Study Discovers Way to Boost Generation Reliability from New Zealand Wind Farms

A recent study conducted by the Department of Geography, University of Otago, has proposed a way to boost generation reliability from New Zealand wind farms.

After analysing New Zealand’s wind circulation patterns speed data from different wind farm sites, Dr Nicolas Cullen and his former Master’s student Peter Gibson have found that “interlinking wind farms across different regions of the country could boost generation reliability from New Zealand wind farms”.

“We essentially found that if the weather is poor for generating power in the Far North, there is a good chance conditions will be favourable for generation in Otago and Southland, and vice versa,” said Dr Cullen.

“Even just a two-region network linking windfarms in far northern and southern regions of the country could substantially reduce zero-generation hours.”

Even though New Zealand’s wind resources are ” some of the best in the world”, windfarms provide only 5 percent of New Zealand’s total energy generation.

That is partly due to variable winds, which make it difficult for windfarms to contribute more fully to the national grid.

“Interconnecting distant windfarms could help meet Government targets of moving from 73 percent of electricity generation from renewable sources to 90 percent by 2025,” according to Dr Cullen.
Article Source:, May 27, 2015.

Image Source: Commons Wikimedia

Tags: Department of Geography  Dr Nicolas Cullen  Peter Gibson  University of Otago  wind farms  

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